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BIHL Trust Drives Education Through Sports Development

BIHL Trust Chairman Major General Bakwena Oitsile sharing encouraging words at the BIHL Trust handover ceremonyBIHL Trust is committed to contributing towards helping build a better tomorrow with and for Batswana while placing a special emphasis on skills development initiatives. At a handover ceremony officiated by the BIHL Trust Chairman, Major General Bakwena Oitsile, held on Thursday November 30th 2017, the Trust presented a total of 1,512 netballs and 1,512 footballs to the Ministry of Basic Education, Ministry of Local Government & Rural Development and Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sport & Cultural Development. 

The handover signified the commencement of the BIHL Trust Schools Sports Drive, a partnership between the BIHL Trust and Botswana Government to enhance sporting facilities in public primary schools. The sponsorship will ensure that all public primary schools in Botswana, 756 schools in total, will receive 2 footballs and 2 netballs.

Major General Oitsile, said “Netball and football are arguably competitive sports in Botswana and worldwide. We therefore embarked on this campaign because of its communal relevance and we believe that sport can play a significant role in our national development. It is a viable means of encouraging a healthy lifestyle and professional sportspeople are also masters in their fields and relatable examples of successful skills development. Sport is also a viable tool in education since it encourages behaviour such as teamwork, practice, problem solving and stress management; these are positive skills students can apply in their daily lives even into adulthood. We trust these facilities will go towards the enrichment of the schools’ learning environments. We also see a grander picture that speaks of so much more in that this donation drive is a vehicle for the discovery of more change-makers in our communities.” 

The BIHL Trust has partnered with the Ministry of Basic Education in particular for a number of major initiatives over the years. These include the Adopt-a-School programme which culminated in the adoption of 11 schools across Botswana especially in rural areas. As part of this initiative, the BIHL Trust invested in the installation of libraries in the schools. The BIHL Trust also initiated a Literacy Programme in partnership with Ministry of Basic Education and Stepping Stones International (SSI). This programme trains primary school teachers of the schools since adopted, so that they can teach their pupils to read at the appropriate age levels and see students progress academically.

In alignment with their 2017-2022 strategy, the BIHL Trust has allocated a significant proportion of annual funding to educational initiatives. Educational programmes have received the largest share of the BIHL Trust 2017 budget.

This came on the back of the BIHL Trust's commitment to providing skills development opportunities to encourage especially Batswana youths to pursue dynamic and productive endeavours that allow them to play a part in nation building.

Major General Oitsile, remarked “Education and sport are resources of hope and evidently part of the fabric of Botswana life as they can fulfill the aspirations of many. In addition, sport is a language of excellence, community, family, a language of love and powerful sector for driving socio-economic development. It is our hope that from this drive and our partnership with the Botswana Government, more operations will come to the table and contribute towards developing our local talent across all industries and sectors.

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